The following reflection is courtesy of Don Schwager (c) 2015, whose website is located at DailyScripture.net
Can anything on earth truly satisfy the hunger we experience for God? The enormous crowd that pressed upon Jesus for three days were hungry for something more than physical food. They hung upon Jesus’ words because they were hungry for God. When the disciples were confronted by Jesus with the task of feeding four thousand people many miles away from any source of food, they exclaimed: Where in this remote place can anyone get enough bread to feed them? The Israelites were confronted with the same dilemma when they fled Egypt and found themselves in a barren wilderness. Like the miraculous provision of manna in the wilderness, Jesus, himself provides bread in abundance for the hungry crowd who came out into the desert to seek him. The gospel records that all were satisfied and they took up what was leftover. When God gives he gives abundantly – more than we deserve and more than we need so that we may have something to share with others as well. The Lord Jesus nourishes and sustains us with his life-giving word and with his heavenly bread.
The sign of the multiplication of the loaves, when the Lord says the blessing, breaks and distributes through his disciples, prefigures the superabundance of the unique bread of his Eucharist or Lord’s Supper. When we receive from the Lord’s table we unite ourselves to Jesus Christ, who makes us sharers in his body and blood. Ignatius of Antioch (35-107 A.D.) calls it the “one bread that provides the medicine of immortality, the antidote for death, and the food that makes us live for ever in Jesus Christ” (Ad Eph. 20,2). This supernatural food is healing for both body and soul and strength for our journey heavenward. When you approach the Table of the Lord, what do you expect to receive? Healing, pardon, comfort, and refreshment for your soul? The Lord has much more for us, more than we can ask or imagine. The principal fruit of receiving from the Lord’s Table is an intimate union with Christ himself. As bodily nourishment restores lost strength, so the Eucharist strengthens us in charity and enables us to break with disordered attachments to creatures and to be more firmly rooted in the love of Christ. Do you hunger for Jesus, the true “bread of life”?
“Lord Jesus, you alone can satisfy the hunger in our lives. Fill me with greatful joy and eager longing for the true heavenly bread which gives health, strength, and wholeness to body and soul alike.
The following reflection is courtesy of PresentationMinistries.com (c) 2015. Their website is located at PresentationMinistries.com
DAILY GRIND OR DAILY BREAD?
“By the sweat of your face shall you get bread to eat.” Genesis 3:19
When God created the human race, He gave us dominion over all creation (Gn 1:28). Created things did not resist us but were in perfect harmony with us. Working the land was a pleasure, not a burden. We didn’t have to struggle to provide food for ourselves.
After we sinned, we changed and the world changed. We and the rest of creation were no longer in harmony. For the first time there was such a thing as bad weather, sick people, and dangerous wild animals. Work became a drag, yet a necessity, not a pleasing re-creation. We had to sweat to get food (Gn 3:19) and had to struggle to survive. The ground was cursed because of us (Gn 3:17). Sometimes it brought forth only thorns and thistles (Gn 3:18), no matter how hard we had worked. Human beings were hungry and starving for the first time.
Then Jesus came and told us that the Father would provide our daily bread (Mt 6:11), and we could now work for Jesus (Col 3:23) rather than for perishable food (Jn 6:27). Jesus is “the Bread of life” (Jn 6:35). He can multiply a few loaves and fish to feed thousands of people (Mk 8:9). He can change bread and wine into His Body and Blood. He has removed the curse of sin. Jesus is Lord of all creation.
Prayer: Jesus, I accept You as my Bread, Creator, Recreator, Savior, Redeemer, Lord, Life, and God. Promise: “Those who had eaten numbered about four thousand.” Mk 8:9 Praise: Sts. Cyril and Methodius, who were brothers, created the Slavonic alphabet and translated the Bible and the liturgy into Slavonic, bringing the light of the gospel to the Slavic nations. (For a related teaching, order our leaflet Accepting Jesus as Lord, Savior, and God or on audio AV 43-1 or video V-43.)
Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant my permission to publish One Bread, One Body covering the period from February 1, 2015 through March 31, 2015.
Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 25, 2014.
The rescript is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted ecclesial permission agree with the contents, opinions, or statements